A law that bans the promotion of homosexuality and sex-reassignment surgery to minors in Hungary took effect on Thursday.
“The homophobic and transphobic amendments to the law, which came into force on July 8, 2021, stigmatize LGBTQI people, deprive LGBTQI youth of information that is vital to them, and illegally restrict freedom of speech and the right to education,” said the Háttér Society, a Hungarian LGBTQ rights group, in a message on its homepage. “Our group’s programs and services will continue to be available to LGBTQI people and their families as they were.”
The Háttér Society and Amnesty International Hungary on Thursday held a press conference outside the Hungarian Parliament in Budapest. The groups said they are prepared to engage in civil disobedience to challenge the law.
The European Union has sharply criticized Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán and members of his ruling Fidesz party over the law and other efforts to curtail LGBTQ rights in the country.
European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen last month described the law as a “shame.” She also said the European Commission would seek to block it from taking effect.
“This bill clearly discriminates against people on the basis of their sexual orientation and it goes against all the values, the fundamental values of the European Union and this is human dignity, it is equality and is human fundamental rights, so we will not compromise on these principles,” said von der Leyen.
The European Parliament on Thursday approved a non-binding resolution that condemns the law and urges the EU to “immediately take legal action” against Hungary, according to Politico. The declaration also calls for Brussels to deny EU funds to the country.